web analytics

Coromandel mine claims rubbished

Written By: - Date published: 12:49 am, March 25th, 2010 - 16 comments
Categories: Conservation, Economy, Mining, poverty - Tags: ,

Denis Tegg is spokesperson for Coromandel Watchdog, the group that lead the fight against mining the last time it was the Right’s big new idea in the 1980s and early 1990s. It was Coromandel Watchdog’s efforts that principally led to the creation of Schedule 4 of the Conservation Act, which protects National Parks and some other DoC land from mining. He writes:

A mining lobbyist has produced grossly inflated back of the envelope figures for the “value” of New Zealand’s mineral resources. These have been used relentlessly by the Government and the media has quoted them almost unchallenged [this was written before TVOne got on to the job].

So I thought I would do some back of the envelope calculations myself.

Page 28 of the Government’s Discussion Paper Appendix 1 says that the value of potential resources mostly gold and silver on the Coromandel is $54 billion.

The next paragraph says mineral production from the open pit mine at Martha Hill Waihi is valued at $225 million per annum.

The average life of a modern mine is around 10 years so the value of total production per open pit mine would be $2.25 billion.

Let’s put aside for the moment that most of this “value” heads offshore.  Or that Newmont’s own Social Impact Report says mining town Waihi has high unemployment levels, double the rate of welfare dependency and lower wage levels than nearby towns of the same size.  Or that it score 10 out of 10 for “social deprivation” (10 is worst)

So how many open pit mines “worth” $2.25 billion do we need to have operating to achieve the potential $54 million of resources? The back of my envelope gives the answer.  24 open pit mines on the Coromandel!

Mr Brownlee won’t rule out open pit mining but under pressure in Parliament on 23 March John Key said he (note he not the Government) would rule out open cast mines on the Coromandel.

Let’s not be churlish about the total confusion and panic in the Government ranks. Let’s accept Key’s “on the hoof” assurances that there will not be any open pit mines.

Which means only underground mines are left to achieve the digging out of this incredible $54 billion potential.

The back of my envelope tells me that underground mines are about 1/20 of the size of an open pit mine. So we are going to need nearly 500 underground mines on the Coromandel, each operating for 10 years to achieve this stupendous $54 billion-dollar bonanza!

If you are looking for further evidence that the Government’s figures are wildly exaggerated its on page 23 of the discussion paper.

There it states that after 66 years of intense activity the Thames goldfield produced just $3.6 billion of gold at today’s prices.  Yet by some miracle, the Thames and another Coromandel gold prospects are going to lead us to economic nirvana in the next few years and we are going to achieve a $54 billion-dollar bonanza.

But wait there is more — Minerals Association lobbyist Doug Gordon says only one in 1000 prospects ever turn into a workable economic mine. So Gordon’s statements mean we have to divide the potential $54 billion by 1000 — giving a figure of only $54 million straight off the bat.

Denis Tegg

www.watchdog.org.nz

sign on for help with submissions at watchdog@pohtukawa.org.nz

16 comments on “Coromandel mine claims rubbished”

  1. The average life of a modern mine is around 10 years so the value of total production per open pit mine would be $2.25 billion

    Actually, the NPV of the income stream, which is about $1.7 billion at a nominal 5% (note: the government uses 10% for all its internal accounting decisions), or $2.8 billion if we double the life of th emine to 20 years.

  2. Cnr Joe 2

    Theres gold in them there priceless habitats! Some.

  3. TightyRighty 3

    curse those M and B buttons being so close together. with all due respect to your obvious expertise on the issue, your conclusion is just plain wrong. you can not simplistically divide $54 billion by 1000 to state what you believe is the actual output. there are not 1000 open cast mines in auckland city where mining has occured in the past. nor on the west coast or in the coromandel. this is all about exploration, no one is digging yet. if digging occurs it will be at the location with the highest possible return, and hopefully the lowest possible impact on the surrounds. come back when the hysteria in you has died down, and maybe the rhetoric too, and present a more valid argument.

    • Bright Red 3.1

      “are not 1000 open cast mines in auckland city where mining has occured in the past. nor on the west coast or in the coromandel.”

      that’s because it’s one in a 1,000 prospects that come off, not one in a thousand mines.

      Unless you know beter than the Minerals Association, of course.

      • TightyRighty 3.1.1

        no, i don’t know better. my point was that one in a thousand prospects that come off does not automatically mean there is only 1/1000 of the estimated mineral wealth in any one spot. it’s simplistic conclusions like that that lend nothing of any value to the debate. if mineral wealth was spread that evenly i could have a hole in my backyard and be mortgage free. and ground floor apartments would be worth more than penthouses because you’d be able to build a pool and pay for it with the earth you pulled out.

        • Pascal's bookie 3.1.1.1

          A mining lobbyist has produced grossly inflated back of the envelope figures for the “value’ of New Zealand’s mineral resources. These have been used relentlessly by the Government and the media has quoted them almost unchallenged [this was written before TVOne got on to the job].

          So I thought I would do some back of the envelope calculations myself.

          The whole point of the post being that, you know, the numbers Brownlee has been throwing around are shit.

  4. Armchair Critic 4

    “present a more valid argument.”
    Something more like s4 lands are priceless, so arguing the economics of mining and therefore implying that mining could be acceptable at some price, is pointless.

  5. freedom 5

    the standard is being censored

    [lprent: No it isn’t. You’re just too impatient about a comment that went into the spam queue.

    Remember this site is run on a voluntary basis by people giving it time when they have some. One of my tasks is to rescue or approve items caught in the spam queue. Yesterday I went to work without my iPhone, which meant that I couldn’t tether to the internet, which meant that my abilities to admin the site were quite restricted.

    However I’m now starting to get interested in banning you because you’re getting irritating and wasting too much of my precious time. ]

    • freedom 5.1

      turns out the link i was trying to post is on the site’s spam filter’s list.
      Why is an internationally recognised academic site on a spam list?
      the link is now spaced so at least it can be seen
      a e 9 1 1 t r u t h . o r g
      the post is
      “no-one said it was going to be easy

      all we can do is point people to information, such as the fact that one of the most academic and heavily regulated information sites on 9/11 Truth last week presented a new legal challenge to the Official story and was signed by 1,000 members.

      A site that to be a member of, you must be a qualified Architect or an Engineer.
      read that again and let it soak in

      1,000 qualified Architects and Engineers challenging an Official declaration from their Government. A challenge based on questions of the physical events, nothing else. No Politics. No accusations, just the facts people, nothing but the facts. Why would they do that if the Truth was not in question?

  6. Stacktwo 6

    A few days before Brownlee and Key admitted the so-called hysterical claims of Forest & Bird et al were in fact accurate, the Herald reported ( http://www.nzherald.co.nz/environment/news/article.cfm?c_id=39&objectid=10632712)

    “Linda Willoughby of Newmont mining corporation, which operates in Waihi, said the company had no interest in Otahu or Parakawai at the moment.

    Nor did it have any plans to mine areas near Thames township that are at risk from flooding and storm damage. “They are totally off the radar,” she said.

    Peter Atkinson of mining company Heritage – the last mining company that was interested in mining in protected areas of the Coromandel before they were placed off limits in the 1990s – was not interested in anything north of the Kopu-Hikuai Rd, the so-called “green line” marking the beginning of protected Schedule 4 land.

    “I don’t know of anyone who is even looking at it,” he said. “As for national parks, dream on,” he said.”

    I wonder how much of the tottering edifice the government is erecting is founded on the speculation of the starry-eyed Richard Baker and the desperation of our clueless leaders?

  7. Lanthanide 7

    Yes, this “lets take the number and divide it by 1000” is quite frankly, stupid and shows ignorance of the situation.

    You realise that when they say “lets go mine in the Corromandal because there’s lots of gold there”, they have effectively already cut out 990 of the bad prospects?

    • Bright Red 7.1

      Lanthanide. The 1 in 1000 comes from the Minerals Association.

      • TightyRighty 7.1.1

        so, didn’t you read my bit about mining where it will have the most value and least impact. you know, one of those cost/benefit thingymabobies?

      • TightyRighty 7.1.2

        Lanthanide – if the figure was one prospect in 50 billion, they could be mining for you

  8. Jim Nald 8

    Will this be like a Saruman cometh to Fangorn Forest?
    Can someone tell Sauron to stop it please!

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • National Does the Nation a Disservice
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters today called for National Party and Opposition leader Judith Collins to stop undermining democracy. “New Zealanders are sadly being fed a steady stream of misinformation about the pre-election period from the National Party,” said Mr Peters. “Its effect is to sow doubt about the legitimacy ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • Speech at the graduation of Wing 340
    Graduation of Wing 340 2pm, 13 August 2020, The Royal New Zealand Police College [CHECK AGAINST DELIVERY] Introduction Ladies and gentlemen, it is a privilege to be here today to celebrate the graduation of Wing 340. Let us begin by acknowledging the presence of Coalition Government colleague, Police Minister the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Transitional housing provides much needed support for Taumarunui whānau
                                                                     Transitional housing provides much needed support for Taumarunui whānau   New emergency and transitional homes will help ease a housing shortage in Taumarunui and provide whānau with much needed support, say Māori Development Minister, Nanaia Mahuta and Whānau Ora Minister, Peeni Henare.  The Ministers officially opened five two-bedroom units ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Government announces plan to tackle problem plastics and seven single-use plastic items
    Following the success of the phase out of single-use plastic shopping bags, the Government now has plans to phase out more single-use and problem plastics to reduce waste and protect the environment announced Associate Minister for the Environment Eugenie Sage. The proposals are to phase-out: some hard-to-recycle PVC and polystyrene ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New opportunities for Kōpū marine facilities
    A commercial and industrial site in Thames-Coromandel will receive $8.2 million to revamp its marine-servicing infrastructure and create new economic development opportunities, Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones has announced. This project is being supported from the $3 billion ‘shovel ready’ fund set aside in Budget 2020 to kick-start the post COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • PM comments on Auckland COVID-19 case
    After 102 days we have our first cases of Covid-19 outside of a Managed Isolation or Quarantine facility in New Zealand. Shortly I will ask Dr Bloomfield to set out the details of the case. While we have all worked incredibly hard to prevent this scenario, we have also planned ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Significant investment in Raukūmara Pae Maunga to prevent Raukūmara forest collapse
    An iwi-Crown approach programme to restore the Raukūmara forest on the East Coast of the North Island and boost employment opportunities for whānau, particularly rangatahi/young people, will receive $34 million funding, Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage has announced. “Raukūmara Pae Maunga is a partnership with Te Whānau-ā-Apanui, Ngāti Porou, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New partnership central to delivering more Māori housing
    Government agencies and partners are working closer together to provide more Māori Housing through the Te MAIHI o te Whare Māori – the Māori and Iwi Housing Innovation Framework for Action (MAIHI). MAIHI is a kaupapa Māori approach that drives a system change to give effect and impact on Māori ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Manawatū Gorge replacement highway drives forward
    Site work is soon to begin on Te Ahu a Turanga: Manawatū Tararua Highway, the project to replace the former SH3 route through the Manawatū Gorge, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Phil Twyford was today in Woodville at the signing of a formal agreement by members of the Alliance ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Pacific Ministers meet to discuss regional economic priorities
    The Pacific Islands Forum Economic Ministers Meeting (FEMM) begins today and will focus on the major economic and social impacts of COVID-19 on the Pacific.  FEMM is an important congregation of Economic Ministers and senior officials from around the region, and for the first time, the annual meeting will be ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Formal apology and payment to George Nepata
    Cabinet has approved a formal apology and ex gratia payment to former soldier George Nepata, announced Defence Minister Ron Mark. This payment is to recognise the New Zealand Defence Force’s failure to provide Mr Nepata with a safe system of work in April 1989 when, as a result of an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Report into Iain Lees-Galloway’s expenditure
    A report undertaken by Ministerial Services into Iain Lees-Galloway’s ministerial expenditure has found no evidence of any inappropriate transactions or spending. Ministerial Services undertook a line by line review of all his expenditure, including staff and spouse expenses for the period 1 January 2019 to 30 June 2020.  “I commissioned ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Managed isolation charges to start 11 August
    Managed isolation charges for returnees will come into force from 12.01am Tuesday 11th August, after they passed their last cabinet milestone today, Housing Minister Megan Woods said. “The new charging system balances the rights of New Zealanders to return home and helps reduce pressure on the managed isolation and quarantine ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Update on New Zealand and the Cook Islands travel bubble
    The Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern and the Prime Minister of the Cook Islands Henry Puna have welcomed the completion of phase one in the establishment of a travel bubble between New Zealand and the Cook Island. Negotiations on the text of an ‘Arrangement to Facilitate Quarantine-Free Travel ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • One-stop ‘jobs and training’ shop goes live
    The Government has launched a new online, phone and onsite service to help New Zealanders connect to a range of employment support and products for workers and businesses affected by COVID-19, announced Minister of Education Chris Hipkins and Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni. Connected.govt.nz is a one-stop-shop for jobseekers, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • MSD security guards to be paid Living Wage
    Security guards contracted to the Ministry of Social Development will be paid at least the Living Wage from next month supporting the Government’s commitment towards fair pay and employment conditions, announced Minister for  Social Development Carmel Sepuloni.   “MSD was  among the first government agencies to pay its employees the living ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New strategy to ensure nature thrives
    The Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage today launched Te Mana o te Taiao, the Aotearoa New Zealand Biodiversity Strategy - a way forward that envisions Aotearoa New Zealand as a place where ecosystems are healthy and resilient, and people embrace the natural world. “Many of New Zealand’s plants and wildlife species ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Provider Languages Fund will support Pacific Wellbeing approach
    “Pacific languages, cultures and identity are essential to the health, wellbeing and lifetime success of our Pacific peoples and their communities in Aotearoa. The strength and resilience of Pacific Aotearoa is not only vital to their own prosperity but integral to the prosperity of all New Zealanders, and is particularly ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19: More funding for schools and boost to construction sector
    ·       $38 million to help schools cover unexpected costs related to COVID-19 ·       $69 million upgrade for online learning ·       $107 million contingency funding to support school construction suppliers facing additional costs due to the lockdown. The Government is releasing $214 million from the COVID-19 response and recovery fund to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Stay safe on the tracks – Rail Safety Week
    Despite the Government installing safety upgrades around the country, people should still take care around rail crossings, said Transport Minister Phil Twyford launching Rail Safety Week. Phil Twyford said installing safety infrastructure is crucial, but we are encouraging people to be more careful around trains too. “We’re making good progress ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government backs Manawatū social housing project
    The Government is providing a cash injection to help Palmerston North City Council complete a programme to provide 78 social housing units for vulnerable tenants. The $4.7 million to build 28 units in the Papaioea Place redevelopment comes from the $3 billion set aside for infrastructure in the Government’s COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Major funding boost for Predator Free Banks Peninsula
    A pest free Banks Peninsula/Te Pātaka o Rākaihautū is one step closer with a $5.11 million boost to accelerate this project and create jobs, announced Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage in Canterbury today. “This is a game changer for this ambitious project to restore the native wildlife and plants on Ōtautahi/Christchurch’s doorstep ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Major investment for indoor sports in Hawke’s Bay
    A Government grant of $6.4 million will expand the Pettigrew Arena in Taradale with new indoor courts of national standard. “The project is likely to take 18 months with approximately 300 people employed through the process,” Grant Robertson said. “The expansion will increase the indoor court space up to 11 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New infrastructure for Far North tourist town
    The Far North tourist destination of Mangonui is to receive Government funding to improve waterfront infrastructure, open up access to the harbour and improve water quality, Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones has announced. A total of $6.5 million from the $3 billion set aside in the COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government remains committed to Women’s Cricket World Cup
    The Government has re-affirmed its commitment to supporting the hosting of the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup, which the ICC has delayed from 2021 to 2022. “This is obviously a disappointing decision for cricket players and fans around the world and for the White Ferns and their supporters here at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Green light for Te Awa River Ride in $220m nationwide cycleways investment
    Cyclists and walkers will now have a safer way to get around Taupō, Tūrangi, and between Hamilton and Cambridge, with funding for shared paths and Te Awa River Ride, Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter announced today. “The Te Awa River Ride is the latest part of massive growth ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Six major ‘shovel-ready’ cycleways funded in Christchurch
    Six major cycle routes will be completed in Christchurch thanks to funding from the Government’s investment in shovel-ready infrastructure as part of the COVID-19 recovery Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter announced today. $125 million will be invested to kick-start construction and fund the completion of the following cycleway ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Police facilities for Whanganui
    Plans are underway for a brand new state-of-the-art hub for Whanganui’s justice and social agencies, following confirmation the ageing Whanganui Central Police Station is to be replaced. Police Minister Stuart Nash has announced $25 million in new infrastructure spending to improve facilities for the wider community, and for staff who ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Relativity adjustment for Waikato-Tainui and Ngāi Tahu
    An adjustment payment has been made to Waikato-Tainui and Ngāi Tahu under the relativity mechanisms in their 1995 and 1997 Treaty of Waitangi settlements, Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Andrew Little announced today. The latest payments to Waikato-Tainui and Ngāi Tahu are $2,700,000 and $2,600,000 respectively to ensure the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Auckland rail upgrades pick up steam
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and Transport Minister Phil Twyford today kicked off the start of the Auckland NZ Upgrade Programme rail projects which will support over 400 jobs and help unlock our biggest city. Both ministers marked the start of enabling works on the third main rail line project ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • PGF support for Wairoa creates jobs
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) investment of $3.78 million in Wairoa will create much needed economic stimulus and jobs, Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. PGF projects announced today include: $200,000 loan to Nuhaka Kiwifruit Holdings Ltd (operated by Pine Valley Orchard Ltd) to increase the productivity ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Public and Māori housing to trial renewable energy technology
    Tenants in public and Māori housing may be benefiting from their own affordable renewable energy in future – a fund to trial renewable energy technology for public and Māori housing has today been announced by Energy and Resources Minister Megan Woods and Associate Minister for Housing (Māori Housing) Nanaia Mahuta. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • $2.7m for Hokianga infrastructure
    Hokianga will receive $2.7 million to redevelop four of its wharves and upgrade its water supply, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. Far North District Council will receive $1.8 million from the Provincial Growth Fund for the work on the wharves. “The work will include the construction of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New fund to support housing and construction sector
    A $350 million Residential Development Response Fund is being established to support the residential construction sector and to minimise the economic impact from COVID-19, the Housing Minister Dr Megan Woods has announced. “The Residential Development Response Fund will help to progress stalled or at-risk developments that support our broader housing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government investment to boost Auckland’s community recycling network
    As part of a broader plan to divert waste from landfill, the Government today announced $10.67 million for new infrastructure as part of the Resource Recovery Network across the Auckland region. “This key investment in Auckland’s community recycling network is part of the Government’s Infrastructure Reference Group ‘shovel ready’ projects ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Te Papa transformation starts at Cameron Road
    The Government is investing $45 million in the first stage of an ambitious urban development project for Tauranga that will employ up to 250 people and help the region grow, Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says the funding has been allocated out of the $3 billion ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Low-emissions options for heavy transport a step closer
    Getting low-emission trucks on the road is a step closer with investment in infrastructure to support hydrogen vehicles, the Energy and Resources Minister Megan Woods has announced. The Infrastructure Reference Group has provisionally approved $20 million for New Plymouth company Hiringa Energy to establish a nationwide network of hydrogen-fuelling stations. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New training centre to upskill workers
    A new trades training centre to upskill the local workforce will be built in the South Waikato town of Tokoroa through funding from the Government’s COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund, Education Minister Chris Hipkins and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones have announced. The Government will contribute $10.84 million from ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Subsequent children legislation to change
    The Government has agreed to repeal part of the Oranga Tamariki Act subsequent children provisions, Minister for Children Tracey Martin announced today. “There are times when children need to go into care for their safety – the safety and care of children must always be paramount,” Minister Martin said. “But ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Funding to expand mental health support for Pacific peoples
    A $1.5 million boost to grow primary mental health and addiction services for Pacific peoples in Auckland, Hamilton and Canterbury will lead to better outcomes for Pacific communities, Associate Health Minister Jenny Salesa says.  Pasifika Futures has received funding to expand services through The Fono, Aotearoa New Zealand’s largest by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago